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Click to change imageThe Asia Pacific Solidarity Network (APSN) is a network of activists who are building solidarity with and support for movements for social justice, genuine democracy and self-determination around the Asia Pacific region.

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APSN – The activist resource site on Indonesia, East Timor and West Papua. Over 20 years of archived reports and articles. APSN also has an wide range of essential resources, archived news and press releases, links and background reports on the Asia-Pacific region. Site map

News reports translated from Indonesian language news sources.

Two legislators detained for joking about bomb while boarding Garuda flight
Detik News – May 23, 2018
Two rogue members of the Banyuwangi Regional House of Representatives (DPRD), Naufal Baderi and Basuki Rahmat, have been detained by airport security police for allegedly joking about a bomb in another passenger's bag.

Teachers association disaffiliates from KSPI after declaration of support for Prabowo
Akurat.co – May 5, 2018
The Indonesian Teachers Association (PGRI) executive board has declared that it is leaving the Indonesian Trade Union Confederation (KSPI).

Elite trade union electoral support doesn't reflect membership vote
Tirto.id – May 2, 2018
The song Hello Hello Bandung was played and sung along to by thousands of workers who packed into the Senayan Sports Arena in Central Jakarta as prospective presidential candidate Prabowo Subianto took to the stage alongside Indonesian Trade Union Confederation president Said Iqbal.

Will trade union electoral support empower workers, or make them a political tool?
BBC Indonesia – May 2, 2018
Prabowo Subianto has preempted President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo in embracing labour groups in the lead up to the 2019 presidential elections.

Trade union deal with Prabowo for cabinet post misplaced, vulgar
Liputan 6 – May 1, 2018
Greater Indonesia Movement Party (Gerindra) chairperson Prabowo Subianto has gained the support of the Indonesian Trade Union Confederation (KSPI) as a candidate for the 2019 presidential elections.

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-Latest News
Improved anti-terror bill to allow for longer detention, pre-emptive arrests
Straits Times – May 24, 2018
Improvements to an anti-terror law expected to be passed on Friday (May 25) will allow the Indonesian authorities to hold anyone suspected of planning a terror attack, based on preliminary leads, for up to 21 days.

Does Indonesia need a tougher anti-terrorism law?
The Conversation – May 24, 2018
Indonesia is hastening deliberations of an anti-terrorism bill, following a series of suicide bombings carried out by supporters of Islamic State in Surabaya, East Java, this month. The parliament is expected to pass the bill on Friday.

FPI 'sweeps' factory to force employer to let workers go home early during Ramadan
Coconuts Jakarta – May 24, 2018
A week into Ramadan, we had hope that this year would be different in that there would be no news of self-proclaimed religious vigilantes "sweeping" businesses, (i.e. forcefully imposing their arguably wayward, ultra-conservative interpretation of the holy fasting month on others) as has been the case in every year past.

Distraction or disaster? Freeport's giant Indonesian mine haunted by audit report
Reuters – May 24, 2018
A state audit of operations at Indonesia's Grasberg mine has cast a cloud over the government's multi-billion-dollar deal to take a majority stake in the mine from Freeport McMoRan Inc and its partner Rio Tinto, according to government and company officials.

Shift in Solomon Islands government's view on Papua
Radio New Zealand International – May 23, 2018
A leading foreign affairs official from the Solomon Islands government says it's now seeing a balanced picture on Indonesia's Papua region. The government is consulting with the provinces as it formulates an official position on West Papuan human rights and self-determination issues.

KPU wants to ban corruption convicts from elections, parliament... not so much
Coconuts Jakarta – May 23, 2018
Indonesia's General Election Commission (KPU) wants to implement a rule, starting with the regional elections taking place in 2019, barring individuals who have been convicted of corruption from running for office.

-Drunken Republic
Click to view imagesDrunken Republic

The lighter (or darker) side of Indonesian politics.

-Red Flag
Red Flag is the fortnightly newspaper of the Australian socialist organisation Socialist Alternative. More >>

-Statements & Press Releases
Indonesia: Terrorist attacks need immediate evaluation of Anti-Terror System
Asian Human Rights Commission Statement – May 14, 2018
The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) strongly condemns the terrorist attacks and suicide bombings which occurred in several churches in Surabaya, East Java Province.

Abandon the fake trade unions, build an alternative political force
SEDAR – May 1, 2018
Today, we will again take to the streets and join the momentum of International Labour Day or May Day 2018. The history of May Day is rooted in the working classes' fight for an eight hour working day.

After 20 years of reformasi, we have yet to win genuine freedom, equality and prosperity
KOMITMEN May Day Statement – May 1, 2018
May 1 is symbolic of our struggle against the tyranny of capital and employers who oppress the working class. And today, we from KOMITMEN, the May 1 Committee for Freedom, Equality and Prosperity, along with the workers of the world are commemorating International Labour Day or May Day.

Joint declaration of the Indonesian People's Movement Conference
Arah Juang – April 29, 2018
On April 19-20, representatives from some 42 organisations gathered in Jakarta to take part in the People's Movement Conference (KGR).

Indonesia: Press freedom and journalists must be protected
Asian Human Rights Commission Statement – April 16, 2018
The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) notes that press freedom and journalist protection in Indonesia is under serious threat. Despite the fact that the government commits to support press freedom, media and journalists have yet to fully enjoy such rights.

Indonesia: East Java High Court sentenced environmental activist to 10-month imprisonment
Asian Human Rights Commission Urgent Appeal – April 6, 2018
The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has received updated information regarding the East Java High Court sentencing of Mr. Heri Budiawan, alias Budi Pego, an environmental activist, to 10-months imprisonment.

Statements, press releases, solidarity and urgent appeals are archived under their country specific page/section, which can be selected from the drop-down menu on the left.

News, in-depth reports and analysis focusing on political developments in the Asia Pacific region.

Indonesia: Democracy in Indonesia: A progress report
The Foreign Service Journal – May 1, 2018
With a population of more than 260 million and an economy that ranks tenth in the world, Indonesia appears destined to be one of the major international players of the 21st century.

Indonesia: Indonesian domestic helpers on sex abuse, slavery-like conditions they endure working overseas
The Star Online – April 8, 2018
Ernawati made great sacrifices for the well-being of her family. She was married at 14 to a man six years her senior and became the breadwinner two years later, when she first travelled to Saudi Arabia, to work as a domestic helper.

Indonesia: The Muslim Cyber Army: what is it and what does it want?
Indonesia at Melbourne – March 20, 2018
On 1 March, the Indonesian National Police announced the arrest of 14 members of the so-called Muslim Cyber Army (MCA) network for defamation, spreading hoax news and hate speech. Although the name might be familiar to most social media and internet users in Indonesia, it remains a nebulous and poorly understood network.

Indonesia: Indonesia's minority report
New Mandala – February 14, 2018
Late last month, The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) issued its 2017 Democracy Index report. In what was a grim year worldwide for five broad categories of democratic indicators – electoral process and pluralism, functioning of government, political participation, democratic political culture, and civil liberties – the worst performing country was Indonesia.

More >>

Max Lane’s Blog – Commentary and analysis on the history, contemporary politics and culture of Indonesian and its relationships with Australia and the world.

-Earlier this week
Solomons govt approaches new position on West Papua
Radio New Zealand International – May 23, 2018
The Solomon Islands government says its official position on West Papua won't be made until after provincial consultations. Consultations follow the submission of a report to government by a Solomons delegation which visited Indonesia last month.

The Soeharto family: where are they now?
Indonesia at Melbourne – May 23, 2018
Soeharto left office in 1998 with a reputation as one of the most corrupt leaders in the world. He and his family are estimated by some to have accumulated between US$15 billion and US$35 billion during his 32 years in power.

Government to move ahead with TNI antiterror unit despite criticism
Jakarta Post – May 22, 2018
Presidential Chief of Staff Gen. (ret.) Moeldoko has said the government is pushing forward its plan to set up the Indonesian Military's Joint Special Operations Command (Koopssusgab) to tackle terrorism despite criticism from several parties, including the National Commission on Human Rights.

Under Jokowi, conservative groups start to condemn terrorism
The Conversation – May 22, 2018
Moving away from their past ambiguous stance on violent Islamic extremism, Indonesian conservative Muslim organisations are taking a more assertive position against terrorism under the current government.

How ISIS has changed terrorism in Indonesia
New York Times – May 22, 2018
A sudden spate of terrorist attacks in Indonesia during the past few weeks offers insights into how supporters of the Islamic State around the world are reacting to the group's defeats in the Middle East.

Indonesian military joint plan for greater role in counterterrorism
Asia Pacific Report – May 21, 2018
Indonesia's Presidential Chief of Staff Moeldoko has claimed that President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo had expressed his consent to bringing back to life the suspended military Joint Special Operations Command (Koopsusgab) tasked with countering terrorism.

Reformasi: 20 years after the fall of Suharto, activists reflect on Indonesia's reforms
ABC News – May 21, 2018
Twenty years ago today, the late Suharto resigned as president of Indonesia after 32 years in power. University students and protesters, who took part in "reformasi" demonstrations and riots across the country, were beaten, jailed and kidnapped during the end of the authoritarian leader's rule.

Reformasi activists were burned, beaten, electrocuted – and they still fear for their country
South China Morning Post – May 20, 2018
Resty Woro Yuniar and Jeffrey Hutton – February 4, 1998, was a day that would change Desmond Junaidi Mahesa's life forever and he never saw it coming. The social justice activist had left his office to attend a gathering after the Muslim festival of Eid in Jakarta, but he never made it to the celebration.

Twenty years on, victims of 1998 Indonesia violence still seek justice
Reuters – May 20, 2018
For the past decade, Indonesian housewife Maria Sanu has joined a small group of protesters at a silent weekly vigil outside the presidential palace in Jakarta, seeking justice for her son who died during the political turmoil of 1998.

Homes in East Lombok attacked, Ahmadis take refuge at police HQ
Jakarta Post – May 20, 2018
It was in the middle of the day on Saturday when an unidentified mob destroyed several houses and attempted to expel the Ahmadiyah community from Grepek Tanak Eat hamlet in Greneng village, West Nusa Tenggara (NTB).

Class struggle has always been a feature of recent Thai history
Ugly Truth Thailand – May 20, 2018
Given the recent discussions about the new "Future Forward Party", whose leading members seem to deny the existence of class struggle, it is worth taking a long term look at class struggle in the country.

Tommy Suharto: Indonesians 'longing' for a return to Suharto rule
Al Jazeera – May 19, 2018
The Suharto political dynasty is being revived in Indonesia. Twenty years after the fall of the country's notorious former President Muhammad Suharto, his youngest son is leading a new political party into next year's elections.

Is Indonesia's Reformasi a success, 20 years after Suharto?
South China Morning Post – May 19, 2018
Usman Said surveys the stainless steel plaques bearing the names of his fallen classmates at Trisakti University in Jakarta. Twenty years ago this week soldiers gunned them down amid escalating protests that within days would topple the dictator Suharto.

Max Lane on how not to get lost in translating Pramoedya Ananta Toer
Jakarta Globe – May 18, 2018
For a long time, before the mini-boom in Indonesian literature in translation started by the buzz over Eka Kurniawan's "Beauty Is a Wound," the only Indonesian novels in English translation you would see on the shelf when you go into a bookstore overseas were more than likely to be Pramoedya Ananta Toer's "Buru Quartet" novels.

News archives

  • News reports on Aceh, Indonesia and West Papua are archived in the Indonesia News Digests.
  • News reports on East Timor are archived in the East Timor News Digests.
  • Other news reports are archived under their country specific page/section.
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